There’s a cloud hanging over the U.K. these days. Yet there’s nothing gloomy about it. In fact, it’s a bit of a bright spot for many small to mid-sized businesses across the region.
That’s because this cloud—a robust collaboration platform developed by Sipsynergy Ltd.—is bringing enterprise-quality services to those who typically don’t have the resources to leverage them.
“It’s almost like a pick and mix service. People select what they need and consume what they need,” explains Sipsynergy CEO John Fox. “We’re not forcing them to have a Rolls Royce service if they don’t need it. But at the same time, it’s there if they do, and it’s affordable.”
Sipsynergy’s business model is all about “simplifying the complicated,” he adds. Instead of targeting end users directly, the company developed a white label collaboration platform that service providers brand and resell under their own logo. Sipsynergy provides the underlying cloud infrastructure, customer self-service portal, billing, and service assurance. According to Fox, the complexity is hidden so well that many users don’t even know they’re dealing with Sipsynergy.
Seamless Cloud Delivery
What they do know is that adding, moving, or changing a service is as easy as a phone call to their service provider and is typically completed within 24 hours. They also know they’re receiving collaboration features like videoconferencing, desktop sharing, and instant messaging at market value, without the hassle of investing in servers, software, and people.
“The customer has the trusted advisor relationship with their traditional telephony service provider, not with us. That means we don’t have to be seen, they just have to know that the backend behind the partner is beyond reproach,” says Fox, noting that through a simple onboarding process with Sipsynergy partners can start to deliver cloud services within days.
The wholesale model is well suited to the U.K., where more than four million businesses operate with 10 employees or less–including corporate satellite offices, dentists, stockbrokers and legal firms–and where cloud services are just now gaining in popularity, he adds.
Rising Demand for Cloud Solutions
To handle the growing interest, Sipsynergy recently moved its proprietary software to Cisco® Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS), which allows it to manage several partners using one interface instead of many. And as more small business owners request cloud services, Sipsynergy is able to scale its platform, easily adding new resellers and deploying additional services as needed.
The company has also earned the right to use the trusted Cisco Powered™ brand. “Whereas competitors used to be able to cast doubt on our service because we’re so unique in the market, now we’re publicly backed by Cisco,” says Fox. “There are no more discussions around ‘Is your service fit for purpose?’ or ‘Is your service legitimate?’ Third-party auditors are saying it is.”
Another benefit of moving to Cisco HCS is that it takes roughly 92 percent less time for Sipsynergy developers to update the company’s proprietary software, freeing them to focus more effort on partner-specific enhancements, such as the self-service portal.
“We started life as a software development company with the goal of making enterprise-quality collaboration features available to the little guy–things like sharing documents, communicating through video and instant messaging, things corporate users are often quite blasé about,” says Fox, noting that the company is now extending its service to the global small business market. “We took that approach and we’re delivering exactly that.”